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Carla Kelley had known since was 45 that a double knee replacement would be in her future due to a condition that caused the back side of her knee caps to wear out prematurely.  “I knew then that I would have to have my knees replaced, but the doctors wanted me to wait until I was older because of the number of years that a knee replacement would last.” said Mrs. Kelley.  Being an active woman, she stayed on the go as much as possible dealing with the pain until simple tasks such as standing and walking became too difficult to allow her to keep up the pace of her life.  “I knew the time had come and it was something that I did not have a choice about anymore.”

carla-kelly1On her 59th birthday, Mrs. Kelley walked into the hospital for her first knee replacement and six months later, her second.  After lots of research looking for a skilled nursing facility to fit her needs, Mrs. Kelley chose Donalson Care Center, part of Lincoln Health System for her rehabilitative care.  “I wanted to recover in a facility surrounded by experienced people who knew way more about this than I did!”  stated Kelley.

Being a self-proclaimed home-town girl, Mrs. Kelley was drawn to Donalson Care Center because of the local ties to the community.  Because of past experience with the facility, she knew the quality of care and compassion was unsurpassed. “I wanted to be where my family and friends had easy access to me, and it’s nice to be home. It was so fun to have people walk by and see my name on the door and come in and say “Is that you?”  It was fun to have friends and family around in the midst of all the pain. “

Kelley did her homework before choosing a skilled nursing facility for her rehabilitation.  “I came and talked to Mrs. Barbara (the care center’s social worker) and some of the staff to answer some of the questions that I needed and I checked other facilities out of town to see what they offered to find the facility that would fit my needs – it was pretty easy to figure out that I actually wanted to come here all along.  I just needed to check to make sure there was not another facility that would suit my needs better. “

“From the front office, to the nurses, to the cafeteria staff, to the housekeeping staff, people knew me by name.  It’s fun to come back and visit everyone because you know the staff personally and it is good to walk through the doors and know that these people helped me get to where I needed to go, and that was to walk again.”

After going home from her rehabilitative stay at Donalson, Mrs. Kelley chose Patrick Rehab-Wellness Center for her outpatient therapy.  “I had options for different places that I could go and like when choosing to come here to Donalson, I wanted to do what was best for me.  I enjoy all my therapists, every day is a new day there.”

Just a few short weeks after being discharged home and working on her outpatient therapy from her second knee replacement, Mrs. Kelley already has her next two mission trips scheduled.  She was able to make her plans confidently knowing her rehabilitative therapy at Donalson Care Center and Patrick Rehab-Wellness Center has prepared her for the trip’s demanding pace.

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